Leo and Fred, or True Stories of Two Good Friends
Hungarian animation, colour, 1987, dir: Pál Tóth, Language: Hungarian, 65’
Directed by Pál Tóth
Screenplay by Pál Tóth
Director of photography: Zoltán Bacsó, Gyöngyi Magyar, Zsolt Pethes, Sándor Polyák, Edit Pugner
Music by János Másik, István Márta, Zorán Sztevanovity
Hungarian cartoons are awash in memorable characters, amongst which one of the most lovable duos is that of Leo and Fred, the troubled circus lion and his energetic handler. The burlesque tales of the comic couple were launched with the 1980 animation Hogyan lehet megijeszteni egy oroszlánt? (How Do You Scare a Lion?). Season one of the TV series made by the Kecskemét-based animation film studio and built around the main characters from the Pál Tóth short ran between 1984 and 1986, which in turn was adapted for release in cinemas as Leo and Fred, or True Stories of Two Good Friends in 1987. The lightly sketched visual world, the jewel-like stories imaged with restrained and subtle humour and the tender milieu ensure Pál Tóth’s film is an engaging experience for young and old alike.